Baby Steps to Become More Organized

I’ll just jump right into the confession that will start it all: I am not very organized by nature. However, in the last few years I have tried really hard to become organized. And I think I’ve come far enough in this adventure that I can give some honest tips that will actually help an unorganized person to do better!

 

Purge

Do yourself a favour and start this journey with a clean(er) slate. Devote some time to going through your clothes, makeup, books, old stuff etc. and get rid of what you don’t use anymore or need! You can donate or sell whatever you aren’t keeping, but the ultimate point of this exercise is to help you de-clutter. Simply put, it’s easier to stay organized when you have less to actually organize.

 

Keep it up

I’ll be honest, it annoys me to even write this step. But your mom was right, you need to make your bed in the morning when you get up. Ensuring your space is tidy goes a long way in helping you keep yourself organized. It will help teach the discipline you need to be and stay organized, but also, as a student, you have to do a lot of living in a small space. The desk is by the bed, and the clothes are all over the floor, and the makeup is on the desk from last night… you get the picture. I’ve realized that my room is a place I need to be able to function in, and that means I need to see my desk… and my floor. Even I’m still working on this step, and sometimes it does get away from me. But on a regular basis I try and make sure my bed is made, no any extra clothes (clean or dirty) laying around, and my desk is clear, so I can work when I need to.

 

Use Your Phone

I definitely can’t be that barely touched all the productivity feature on their iPhone. It started with sticky notes for me (yes, actual pen and paper note-to-self’s) but I realized my phone and laptop have very similar features… and I don’t need to carry a stack of sticky notes around. I love to use the sticky note function on my MacBook, and the Reminder app on my iPhone. While you’re transitioning into your more organized self, these tools are easy to use throughout the day because it requires no planning (unlike an agenda, we’ll get there), and they’re always with you! These applications are a free way to keep tasks, deadlines and appointments from falling through the cracks.

 

Write It Down, Too

This has to be my favourite half-step to becoming more organized and something I actually found super helpful. I bought myself a notebook, not an agenda, just a lined notebook and I trialed using it for a semester as a continuous to-do list. I’d put the date at the top, elementary school style. A page would either be for just a day, or a week depending on what I had going on and similarly to the last idea, I would use that book all day every day! I would cross off things as I did them or they’d get added to the next day/week’s tasks. I found being able to write down what was going on in my life without the pressure that comes with using an agenda to be wildly helpful.

 

Do What You Can the Night Before

Within reason. What I mean by that is pack your bag the night before. You will be way less likely to forget something in your morning scramble if it’s already done. Pick your outfit the night before. Personally, getting dressed in the morning has never been much of an ordeal for me. But there are always those mornings that nothing feels right or looks good and it makes you run late and then you just end up frazzled and grumpy all day. I don’t use this trick every day, but if I know it’s going to be an early start or just a long day, I will set my clothes out the night before. It keeps my mornings much less stressful and because you did most of the work already, it allows for a little bit more sleep!